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"We witness a new stage of development"

Aleksey Malashenko, an expert at the Moscow Carnegie Center, said that the situation in the Russian Caucasus republics is improving, but suggested deeper reform to ensure long-term success.

Malashenko was speaking at the all-Russian forum “Caucasus: Traditions and Modernization” that recently took place in Nalchik, in the republic of Kabardino-Balkaria. The organizers said they hoped that the forum would become a permanent event, with its location moving from one Caucasus republic to another, depending on the main subject of discussion.

In an interview with RT, Malashenko said that the situation now in the Caucasus is much better than it was just several years ago, and that society there had entered a new stage of development.

However, the expert noted that the policies of Chechen President Ramzan Kadyrov must be corrected and also said that in order for reforms to succeed, the Russian Caucasus region must be divided into two parts, eastern and western, with the dividing line drawn near Kabardino-Balkaria, where the forum took place.